Documentaries are always a favourite genre for Calgary audiences, since they bring big global ideas and issues right to you - or as the Docs programmer Alex Rogaleski puts it, "They allow you to see a new part of the world, all from the comfort of a cinema." And for some of our selections this year - such as THE LAST ANIMALS or BRIMSTONE AND GLORY - that's very helpful, since you may not ever be able to make it out to see Northern White Rhinoceros inAfrica or fireworks in Tultepec, Mexico in person.
If you're the type to follow thematic threads, this year's lineup has plenty of conceptually-linked programming for you to check out. In the wake of the global refugee crisis and mass migrations in the Middle East and Europe, some very stark and heavy-hitting documentaries have emerged to show the reality of the situation, such as 69 MINUTES OF 86 DAYS, HUMAN FLOW, and THE WORKER'S CUP. No less important are docs that highlight health care and some of the problems our filmmakers have faced: UNREST and LIVING PROOF both offer unapologetic, biographical peeks into the directors' lives with debilitating diseases. For those who are politically minded, PACMEN, RAT FILM, and OUR PEOPLE WILL BE HEALED will hit the mark; on the other hand, if you want something fun and lighthearted, definitely head out to see STRAD STYLE, in which a rural Ohioan sets out to recreate a classical violin with no training whatsoever, or REBELS ON POINTE, about an irreverent drag ballet troupe.
Oh - what's that? You'd rather watch some movies about music? Well, in addition to the films mentioned above, both MIGHTY GROUND and WHEN GOD SLEEPS deal with people rejected from society who find solace in music. SOME OTHER GUYS tells the barely-known story of a Liverpool band who could have been as big as the Beatles, and TURN IT AROUND is an expertly-woven summary of the last 30 years of punk music in the heart of California's East Bay area.